With Spring Break just around the corner, many of us will soon have a house full of kids we are looking to entertain – whether that is at home or away! We asked our wonderful Blogaholics and PTPA Testers for your best tips on how to spend the time off with kiddos, and oh boy, did you give them! Here’s some of our favorite ideas which are sure to keep the whole family entertained for the break and beyond!
- Plan a staycation – Nothing beats a day at home in your pajamas, reading lots of books, snuggling with the kiddies, and making forts with the furniture and blankets and having indoor picnic lunches. Amanda DeGrace, amandadegrace.ca
- Lights, camera, action! Rainy days are a great time to create and film movies to get the creative juices flowing. Soulla Lindo
- Dollar days – Dollar store colouring books and stickers keep the kids entertained cheaply and quiety. Lucy Goddard-Mugginridge, PTPA Parent Tester
- Crafting with the Kiddos – Not only do crafts keep everyone entertained, you can even make presents for grandparents, and other friends and family. Get craft books inexpensively at half price retailers or check them out from the Library, or you can get thousands of free crafts online that you can print off. Leanne, Rave and Review
- Cook up a storm – Double (or triple) some of your family’s favourite recipes and stock the freezer for all the warm sunny days to come when you are too busy playing outside to be bothered to cook! Amanda DeGrace, amandadegrace.ca
- Bring the playground in – Melanie Savoie, a PTPA Parent Tester, suggests finding an indoor playground near you. No playground? Try a play area at a fast food restaurant!
- Homemade cards – Cut up paper and cut out pictures from magazines to make cards for everyone you know. Much more special than store-bought and almost free, a great suggestion by Dina Doodle, a PTPA Parent Tester
- Literature on loan – Many parent testers mentioned the Library as a great way to spend a rainy day so you can still get out of the house – it’s free, it’s indoors, and it’s a truly awesome way to encourage a love of reading! Most Libraries also have special events and storytime just for children, so be sure to call ahead and get your Library schedule of events.
- Pop some corn and snuggle – Enjoy movie night with the family. Arianah Watts, PTPA Parent Tester
- Encourage your scientist – Visit your local aquarium with your children and learn and play together. Ashley Jewell, PTPA Parent Tester
- Drama with your Mama – Fern Goldstein-Ireland, a PTPA Parent Tester, suggests encouraging a little drama by making a puppet theatre and finding ideas to print out and colour for popsicle stick puppets!
- Explore your green thumb – Ashley Jewell, a PTPA Parent Tester, spends time working on an indoor garden with her kids
- Strike out boredom – Hit the bowling lanes with your brood and bond over strikes, gutter balls, and good times. Jennifer Marlow and Katie Pastor Whitcher, PTPA Parent Testers
- Be a tourist in your own city – Buy a citypass and GO! You have 9 days to use it, and it gets you into several different museums and tourist locations. Orit Fishman, PTPA Parent Tester
- Geo-WHAT? – Kimberly Lee Dougherty, a PTPA Parent Tester, takes the kids geocaching, which is like a big scavenger hunt you can do in just about any town. All you need is a GPS unit and a printed out list of “caches” and you will see how incredibly fun it is for both kids and adults.
- Go fly a kite – Don’t have one? Make one! Our favorite model is a kite made from FedEx envelopes, but there are lots of templates online that you can download and create. Leanne, Rave and Review
- Learn from your ancestors – Go and visit the grandparents (or the greats!) and take a walk with them, explore their attics or play in their gardens. You will learn about your family and explore the world around you. Diane Belles Kline, a PTPA Parent Tester, is looking forward to taking the kids to visit their grammy, something that is hard to do when school is in session.
- From farm to feast – Sarah Posner, a PTPA Parent Tester, is taking her family to visit a farm, a great way to learn about where the food we eat comes from!
- Ride and reward – Jennifer Marlow, a PTPA Parent Tester, suggests taking the family for a bike ride to get dessert. A fun treat and a great way to reconnect while you ride.
- Explore sealife – Whether you have a day away or only a few hours, Jennifer Marlow, a PTPA Parent Tester, recommends heading to the beach. Camp, build sandcastles, or just throw rocks in the water as a family.
- Don’t forget your furry and feathered friends – Grab your pooches or a bag of old bread for ducks and head to the lake to get some great photo ops and good times says Jennifer Marlow, a PTPA Parent Tester
- Spring Snow – If there is still snow outside (which is the case for a lot of you), Holly Lee, a PTPA Parent Tester suggests dropping food coloring into a spray bottle and “painting” the snow. What fun!
- Enjoy some fresh air – Hop on a ferry or take public transportation as a great way to learn about and explore your city cheaply. Theresa Oh Rosales, PTPA Parent Tester
- Zoo-ie Mama! – Take your monkeys to the zoo and let them run out their energy and learn about animals at the same time, a great suggestion from Cheryl Andrews-Morreale, a PTPA Parent Tester